Release Date: Apr 14, 2017
Record label: Interscope
Whatever Playboi Carti lacks in substance, he makes up in sheer audacity. For the better part of two years, he kept his fans waiting for a full-length project, held over by a handful of songs, guest verses and previews. "Less is more" is the Atlanta-native's mantra, and the arrival of his eponymous debut is only further confirmation. Playboi Carti is an exercise in efficiency--more beats, less words in number and variation.
I'm not obtuse enough to pretend like Playboi Carti dropped his debut mixtape (album? uh… playlist?) in a vacuum. Yes, one of the most exciting young rappers has finally released his long-gestating full-length, but he did so on the same day that the unquestionable best rapper alive released 14 potent tracks of introspective, technically flawless rapping. But in a way, it's not that bad of a thing that Playboi Carti finally gave the world his self-titled debut during the same rotation of Earth that Kendrick Lamar gifted us DAMN.
Back when "Broke Boi" first went viral, Playboi Carti was transitioning from Awful Records, the indie label led by fellow Atlanta native Father, to the more trendy A$AP Mob. In the two years since, he's mingled with industry giants, distanced himself from old collaborators like MexikoDro, Dexter, and Ethreal, and formed a new relationship with Pi’erre Bourne, the underrated up-and-comer responsible for a majority of Young Nudy's Slimeball series. During this transition phase, for all intents and purposes, Carti has been locked in a Hyperbolic Time Chamber, training for his moment on the world stage.
When Playboi Carti dropped his 2015 track "Broke Boi," the Atlanta native displayed in a short four minutes exactly where modern day rap was headed. A twinkly trap beat with lots of catchy repetition make up one of Carti's biggest songs to date. This was a positive way in which Carti contributed to the progression of new age hip-hop and especially rap that exists almost exclusively on the internet.